Richard Kicklighter wrote:I've been doing a lot of reading on Oca this year but was unable to secure tubers or seed for planting this growing season. 18 inches seems more reasonable, but depending on where you grow at and the light conditions-- perhaps double or more is possible. The best write-up I've found for Oca and the other andean tubers is from Bill @ Cultivariable and his guide there.
For companion plants, it sounds like they do well with alliums or other crops that wont be around by harvest in late fall. There is a companion planting section on Bill's guide as well.
Assuming I can secure tubers for the coming year-- I'll likely skip the companion planting initially.
Fredy Perlman wrote:We have mild winters here as well. This is my second year of growing oca and after planting twelve tubers last year, I had more than I knew what to do with. Of course I have more this year, and a number from last year that were left in the ground.
Even when they die back, they continue to develop tubers. Last year I dug in late November and December, they were fine, despite some frost. they had probably started to show frost damage a few weeks prior. Only the tubers on the surface were damaged. This is also true of ulluco and mashua.
I started a thread about this last year
because these crops seem promising if you don't want to amend your soil much and don't want to spend a lot of time harvesting. They seem very passively productive. the biggest inconvenience with them is that they should not be grown in the same place for more than one year, because they can develop viruses that will be very hard to eliminate. I have already left oca and mashua in the same place for two years in a row, because it's impossible to get out all the tubers, and will have to work harder at that this winter.
Regarding companion planting, they did very well with alliums, Spanish black radishes, and crosnes. I haven't found anything that seems put off by them, although mashua has a tendency to overwhelm asparagus fronds. Bill at Cultivariable said that trellising can keep mashua from spreading too much... I had one that climbed a 10 foot deer fence this year.
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